DEAR READERS: As 2015 begins, I want to thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts with me about Teen Talk. Writing an advice column means that I not only offer advice but also listen to your advice. I appreciate your letters and emails and the stories you share with me.
I encourage you to tell those you love that they matter, you appreciate each day and you take time to count your blessings. Make sure you aren’t living your life just counting the days, but rather making the days count.
Here’s to 2015.
DEAR KELLY: I read your article and my heart just ached for the teen whose mother had passed away on Dec. 27. I have a suggestion that may be helpful: For this year and every year acknowledge her in a happy and healthy way. It is a tradition that I have in my own family. Before Thanksgiving each year, I look for a Christmas ornament that I can give to friends and family during our Thanksgiving meal to commemorate the year and add to their Christmas decorations. This tradition could be adapted for this family. I would suggest that the teen and the dad shop together for two ornaments. One to remember the teen’s mother and one for the stepmother to acknowledge the new family. Then they could both be added to the family tree. The teen could continue this tradition as she grows into adulthood, purchasing a new ornament for both the mother and stepmother.
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Thank you for the advice that you share through Teen Talk. It has been helpful to me as a stepmother to understand the current issues teens deal with.
DEAR KELLY: I just wanted to thank you for your response to the girl whose caught between her parents over the holidays. You said that you were going to upset a lot of people, but I thought you were right on, especially about how, at 17, it was time for her to be heard.
DEAR KELLY: I’m so sorry for the poor teen and her being pulled apart every Christmas. In my own family there have been work-related issues and then marriages of children, which complicated things, but not with acrimony. My solution for nearly two decades has been, “Christmas at Papa’s house” on the 27th. It’s doable and fun for everyone. I wish her the best.
DEAR KELLY: I’ve been a reader of The Bee forever and have been reading your Teen Talk column with much interest for years. I’m writing just to say, great job. You are really good. Your advice is spot-on every time and written with such “softness” and obvious concern and empathy that teenagers should get and accept your message, even when they may not like it.
I don’t how you acquired such so much wisdom and insight at your relatively young age. And for ages I’ve been meaning to write you, extend my sincere congratulations for your fine and helpful work and express my hope that you can and will continue to make such a major, positive contribution to society for many years.
DEAR KELLY: Good advice to Brooke about rallying with her girlfriends instead of focusing on why her boyfriend cheated. Too many girls concentrate only on the boy and forget how valuable girlfriends are. Some girls completely lose themselves and give everything to the boys, forgetting they will need those girls when they break up. Teens need to be reminded that most of these relationships won’t last, but friendships will. So what if he cheated? He wasn’t going to be your husband, Brooke. No big loss.
Write to Kelly Richardson at Teen Talk, The Sacramento Bee, P.O. Box 15880, Sacramento, CA 95852, or email krichardson@ sacbee.com.